The Completeness of the Exile

  Answers to Deniers of  
  Brit-Am  
  Biblical Truth  

Completeness of the Exile.

Duration: 28 minutes


The Ten Tribes were Exiled and lost consciousness of their ancestry. There are those who claim, against the Bible, that only a small portion were really exiled. We prove that the overwhelming majoirty were indeed taken away by the Assyrians.
SCROLL DOWN!





The following article is divided roughly into three sections:
a. Answers to Claims from Scripture.
b. The Completeness of the Exile in Secular Sources.
c. Proof from Prophecy.


a. ANSWERS TO CLAIMS FROM SCRIPTURE

Were ALL the Ten Tribes Exiled?


      See also:
The Stages of Exile

      Brit-Am understands the Bible as saying that the Northern Ten Tribes of Israel split away from the southern section centered around Jerusalem. All of the northern entity was exiled and disappeared. They are known as 'The Lost Ten Tribes". Only towards the End of Days will most of them return and re-unite with those Tribes that remained and that are known collectively as "Judah" or "The Jews". There are those who state that not all of the Ten Tribes were exiled and that those who were mostly returned and rejoined the Jews of Judah. This article is an answer to such a claim.


Site Contents by Subject Home
Research
Revelation
Reconciliation
Books
Magazine
Publications
Site Map
Contents in Alphabetical Order
Search
This Site

rose


      Under kings Saul, David, and Solomon the twelve tribes were united in one kingdom which, at various stages, controlled a significant portion of the Middle East. King David, from the Tribe of Judah, established the capital at Jerusalem within which his son Solomon built the Temple. In the reign of King Rehoboam, son of Solomon, ten of the northern most tribes seceded and formed their own kingdom (1-Kings 12: 20-23), which was referred to as "Israel", (e.g. Hosea 5:5). The remaining tribes who remained faithful to the House of David were called "Judah". From inhabitants of the Kingdom of "Judah" are descended the modern Jews, though many individuals from the northern seceding tribes also made their way south (e.g. 2-Chronicles 15:9). In the course of time, these too became part of the Jewish nation. In approximately 740-720 BCE the Northern Kingdom of Israel was conquered by the Assyrians and all of its people were exiled (2-Kings 17:18). It is conventionally accepted to name those exiles taken away by the Assyrians "The Lost Ten Tribes" after the original body who broke away from Judah. The Lost Ten Tribes were destined to lose their identity. The exile was complete. There are no definite archaeological remains pertaining to Israelites in the northern "Israel" area and dating from after the Assyrian exile. The overwhelming majority of Israelites had been taken away to places named in the Bible, in Talmudic literature, and other sources, to locations wherein Israelite presence is confirmed by archaeological evidence and from popular legend. They lost awareness of their identity and did not return.

Someone Quoted from Bible verses as if to show that not all the northern Ten Tribes were exiled:
These are the verses that were quoted against us followed by our answers:


(1) Claim 1:
"Ephraim and Manasseh, and out of Simeon" Still Present in the Time of King Asa of Judah?


AND HE GATHERED ALL JUDAH AND BENJAMIN, AND THE STRANGERS WITH THEM OUT OF EPHRAIM AND MANASSEH, AND OUT OF SIMEON: FOR THEY FELL TO HIM OUT OF ISRAEL IN ABUNDANCE, WHEN THEY SAW THAT THE LORD HIS GOD WAS WITH HIM (2-Chronicles 15:9).
The Northern Ten Tribes under Jeroboam split away from the southern kingdom of Judah (1-Kings 12:16) in ca. 928 BCE according to conventional dating. King Asa of Judah lived well before the Exile of the Northern Israelites.

His reign is conventionally given as 908-867 BCE whereas the Exile took place in 730-720 BCE. The above verse indicates that many from the Northern Kingdom moved south before the Ten Tribes were exiled.
How is this compatible with your claim that ALL of the Northern Israelites were exiled?

Answer to Claim 1:

We agree that some citizens of the Northern Kingdom moved south before the exile so but this does not nullify the fact that: The Assyrian Exile included all of the Northern Kingdom PLUS a good portion of the southern though the northern section is the one emphasized by Scripture. Those who remained were from the Tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi as well as a mixed remnant of the other tribes that according to one Midrashic source (Seder Olam) represented 20% per cent of the total. Nevertheless those who remained from the other tribes were a minority and are subsumed amongst Judah, Benjamin, and Levi. We have discussed this at length in our works especially in "The Tribes".

(2) Claim 2:
Hezekiah Celebrates the Passover with "All Israel" and with "Ephraim and Manasseh"


[2-Chronicles 30:1] AND HEZEKIAH SENT TO ALL ISRAEL AND JUDAH, AND WROTE LETTERS ALSO TO EPHRAIM AND MANASSEH, THAT THEY SHOULD COME TO THE HOUSE OF THE LORD AT JERUSALEM, TO KEEP THE PASSOVER UNTO THE LORD GOD OF ISRAEL.

[2-Chronicles 30:9] FOR IF YE TURN AGAIN UNTO THE LORD, YOUR BRETHREN AND YOUR CHILDREN SHALL FIND COMPASSION BEFORE THEM THAT LEAD THEM CAPTIVE, SO THAT THEY SHALL COME AGAIN INTO THIS LAND: FOR THE LORD YOUR GOD IS GRACIOUS AND MERCIFUL, AND WILL NOT TURN AWAY HIS FACE FROM YOU, IF YE RETURN UNTO HIM.

[2-Chronicles 30:10] SO THE POSTS PASSED FROM CITY TO CITY THROUGH THE COUNTRY OF EPHRAIM AND MANASSEH EVEN UNTO ZEBULUN: BUT THEY LAUGHED THEM TO SCORN, AND MOCKED THEM.
Hezekiah sent emissaries to those who had NOT YET been exiled but his emissaries were mocked. Brit-Am today and those who follow Brit-Am are also in occasion in danger of being derided.

[2-Chronicles 30:11] NEVERTHELESS DIVERS OF ASHER AND MANASSEH AND OF ZEBULUN HUMBLED THEMSELVES, AND CAME TO JERUSALEM.

[2-Chronicles 30:18] FOR A MULTITUDE OF THE PEOPLE, EVEN MANY OF EPHRAIM, AND MANASSEH, ISSACHAR, AND ZEBULUN, HAD NOT CLEANSED THEMSELVES, YET DID THEY EAT THE PASSOVER OTHERWISE THAN IT WAS WRITTEN. BUT HEZEKIAH PRAYED FOR THEM, SAYING, THE GOOD LORD PARDON EVERY ONE.

In the above verses people from the tribes of Asher, Manasseh, Ephraim, Zebulon, and Issachar are mentioned as coming to Jerusalem. These tribes belonged to the Northern Kingdom of "Israel". If they had all been exiled why are these tribes recalled?

Answer to Claim 2:

The Bible says that in the first year of the reign of Hezekiah (2-Chronicles 29:3) the Temple was purified.

[2-Chronicles 29:3] HE IN THE FIRST YEAR OF HIS REIGN, IN THE FIRST MONTH, OPENED THE DOORS OF THE HOUSE OF THE LORD, AND REPAIRED THEM.

Many from the northern kingdom came to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover. After keeping the Passover in Jerusalem they presumably returned to their homes in the north. They did not necessarily all stay in the south though some may have. This event occurred at the beginning of the reign of King Hezekiah who reigned from ca. 726 or earlier to ca 697 BCE the dates being uncertain.
This was before the Assyrian Exile of the Northern Tribes was completed.
Hezekiah reigned for 29 years and he was 25 years old when his reign began (2-Chronicles 29:1).
According to the simple literal sense of Scripture the purification of the Temple and the call to those who remained from the northern tribes to come up and celebrate the Passover in Jerusalem took place in the very first year of his reign (2-Chronicles 29:3).
In the above verses people from the tribes of Asher, Manasseh, Ephraim, Zebulon, and Issachar are indeed mentioned as coming to Jerusalem. They may have been quite numerous yet it would appear from the verses that they were a minority amongst their tribesmen most of whom did not come up and some of whom had "laughed to scorn" (2-Chronicles 30:10) the emissaries of Hezekiah. Those who did come to the sacrifice in Jerusalem at the Passover presumably returned to their homes (as did everybody else) after the Feast. About three years later the Assyrians began the siege of Samaria after which most of the Northern Israelites who had remained were taken away as described in the Books of Amos, Chronicles, and Kings.

The exile took place in stages:
  1. First the Tribes east of the Jordan.
  2. The Tribes in the North Galilee with Dan having disappeared at an earlier date.
  3. The area of Samaria and its surroundings.
  4. The unfenced cities of "Judah" whose inhabitants joined the Ten Tribes in Exile and who according to a boast by the king of Assyria numbered more than 200,000.
The Jews who remained in Judah were destined to be exiled to Babylon and from there to return under the leadership of Ezra and Nehemiah. Those Jews who had been taken into exile previously by Sennacherib remained unheard of. They joined their brothers from the Ten Tribes and became assimilated with them. Even so, in Biblical terms the Lost Ten tribes are referred to as "Israel", or as "Samaria", or "Joseph" or "Ephraim". The Jews are recalled as "Judah", "Jerusalem", or "Zion". "Judah" is distinct from the Lost Ten Tribes who had gone away and were not to return until the End Times. In the census lists of Ezra and Nehemiah only people from the Tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi are recalled. All the others had been exiled by the Assyrians and their identity hidden.

[A more detailed account of the stages of Exile is given below, see also
see "The Tribes"].


The beginning of the reign of King Hezekiah was before the third stage when most of Israel had been exiled though a remnant had remained centered around Samaria and these were also due to be exiled in ca. 722-720 BCE or later (2-Kings 17:6). The purification of the temple and the call by Hezekiah to the northern tribes was in the first year of the reign of Hezekiah. The verses below show that the exile of Samaria occurred after this event. Presumably at the beginning (?) of the fourth year (ca. three years later) the Assyrians began a siege of Samaria that lasted for three years and Samaria was captured in what the Bible terms the sixth year of Hezekiah.

The Bible says:
[2-Kings 18:9] AND IT CAME TO PASS IN THE FOURTH YEAR OF KING HEZEKIAH, WHICH WAS THE SEVENTH YEAR OF HOSHEA SON OF ELAH KING OF ISRAEL, THAT SHALMANESER KING OF ASSYRIA CAME UP AGAINST SAMARIA, AND BESIEGED IT.
Note: The siege of Samaria by Assyria began in the fourth year of Hezekiah whereas the purifying of the Temple and the call to people in the north was in the first year.

[2-Kings 18:10] AND AT THE END OF THREE YEARS THEY TOOK IT: EVEN IN THE SIXTH YEAR OF HEZEKIAH, THAT IS IN THE NINTH YEAR OF HOSHEA KING OF ISRAEL, SAMARIA WAS TAKEN.
Note these verses: The siege begins in the 4th year of Hezekiah and in the 6th year Samaria is taken and after that (as shown in the next verses) the northern Israelites are exiled.

[2-Kings 18:11] AND THE KING OF ASSYRIA DID CARRY AWAY ISRAEL UNTO ASSYRIA, AND PUT THEM IN HALAH AND IN HABOR BY THE RIVER OF GOZAN, AND IN THE CITIES OF THE MEDES:

[2-Kings 18:12] BECAUSE THEY OBEYED NOT THE VOICE OF THE LORD THEIR GOD, BUT TRANSGRESSED HIS COVENANT, AND ALL THAT MOSES THE SERVANT OF THE LORD COMMANDED, AND WOULD NOT HEAR THEM, NOR DO THEM.

[2-Kings 18:13] NOW IN THE FOURTEENTH YEAR OF KING HEZEKIAH DID SENNACHERIB KING OF ASSYRIA COME UP AGAINST ALL THE FENCED CITIES OF JUDAH, AND TOOK THEM.
The Assyrians also took into captivity a great number from Judah who joined their Northern brothers and mixed with them.

(3) Claim 3:
King Josiah of Judah also celebrated the Passover with "all Judah and Israel that were present". Does not this indicate that Northern Israelites were still in the neighborhood?


King Josiah the son of Amon ruled over Judah in ca. 628-609 BCE long after the Northern Tribes had been exiled. King Josiah also purified the temple and called on all Israel to attend the Passover in Jerusalem:

[2-Chronicles 35:17] AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL THAT WERE PRESENT KEPT THE PASSOVER AT THAT TIME, AND THE FEAST OF UNLEAVENED BREAD SEVEN DAYS.

[2-Chronicles 35:18] AND THERE WAS NO PASSOVER LIKE TO THAT KEPT IN ISRAEL FROM THE DAYS OF SAMUEL THE PROPHET; NEITHER DID ALL THE KINGS OF ISRAEL KEEP SUCH A PASSOVER AS JOSIAH KEPT, AND THE PRIESTS, AND THE LEVITES, AND ALL JUDAH AND ISRAEL THAT WERE PRESENT, AND THE INHABITANTS OF JERUSALEM.

[2-Chronicles 35:19] IN THE EIGHTEENTH YEAR OF THE REIGN OF JOSIAH WAS THIS PASSOVER KEPT.
These verses have been interpreted to mean that not only the Tribes of the Southern Kingdom of Judah (Judah, Benjamin, and Levi) were presented but ALSO "Israelites" in general suggesting that not all of the Northern Kingdom had been exiled. What is your answer?

Reply to Claim 3:

King Josiah (ca 628?-609? BCE) celebrated the Passover with those who were present. The verse emphasizes the Kohanim (Priests), Levites, Judah, and "Israel who were present" apparently including Benjamin and those few from the other tribes who still remained. The very phraseology suggests these were a minority. In addition (as explained in our books "The Tribes" and "Origin") in the time of King Josiah Northern Israelites amongst the Scythian forces did make a short-lived attempt to re-settle in the Land of Israel but the attempt was not successful.

(4) Claim 4:
Josiah purified the cities of Manasseh, Ephraim, Simeon, "even unto Naphtali" of idolatry. Does not this indicate people of the Northern Kingdom still remaining?


[2-Chronicles 34:6] AND SO DID HE IN THE CITIES OF MANASSEH, AND EPHRAIM, AND SIMEON, EVEN UNTO NAPHTALI, WITH THEIR MATTOCKS [Hebrew: "BeCharvoteihem" i.e. "IN THEIR RUINS"] ROUND ABOUT.

[2-Chronicles 34:7] AND WHEN HE HAD BROKEN DOWN THE ALTARS AND THE GROVES, AND HAD BEATEN THE GRAVEN IMAGES INTO POWDER, AND CUT DOWN ALL THE IDOLS THROUGHOUT ALL THE LAND OF ISRAEL, HE RETURNED TO JERUSALEM.

[2-Chronicles 34:8] NOW IN THE EIGHTEENTH YEAR OF HIS REIGN, WHEN HE HAD PURGED THE LAND, AND THE HOUSE, HE SENT SHAPHAN THE SON OF AZALIAH, AND MAASEIAH THE GOVERNOR OF THE CITY, AND JOAH THE SON OF JOAHAZ THE RECORDER, TO REPAIR THE HOUSE OF THE LORD HIS GOD.

[2-Chronicles 34:9] AND WHEN THEY CAME TO HILKIAH THE HIGH PRIEST, THEY DELIVERED THE MONEY THAT WAS BROUGHT INTO THE HOUSE OF GOD, WHICH THE LEVITES THAT KEPT THE DOORS HAD GATHERED OF THE HAND OF MANASSEH AND EPHRAIM, AND OF THE ENTIRE REMNANT OF ISRAEL, AND OF ALL JUDAH AND BENJAMIN; AND THEY RETURNED TO JERUSALEM.

The above verses recall the activity of King Josiah "in the cities of Manasseh and Ephraim, and Simeon even unto Naphtali". Does this not show the existence of Israelite Tribes remaining in the Land of Northern Israel?

Reply to Claim 4:

The King James (KJ) says: "AND SO DID HE IN THE CITIES OF MANASSEH, AND EPHRAIM, AND SIMEON, EVEN UNTO NAPHTALI, WITH THEIR MATTOCKS ROUND ABOUT" [2-Chronicles 34:6]. The words translated above as
"WITH THEIR MATTOCKS" in Hebrew is
"BeCharvotayhem"
which means
"IN THEIR RUINS"!

King Josiah went around the RUINED CITIES of Northern Israel and destroyed the remnants of idols he found in them. The verse in Hebrew actually affirms that the cities were in ruins and presumably uninhabited.

See also:
"Daat Mikra" (Sefer Diverei HaYamim-b) p.902:
#The matter of the verse as read is "becharvotayhem" in their destroyed cities.
This is how the Aramaic translation renders it (Bait Tsadiyut-hon -in their ruins) and so too does Gersonides: Cities that were then in ruins#
n.16 For "charvot" in the sense of deserted cities Psalm 9:6 Ezekiel 36:4.
[Daat Mikra points to the related expression "churba" in Arabic].

We admit that a minority of Northern Israelites may have remained. Amos (3:12) has been interpreted as saying that one in eight would not be exiled. A Midrash indicates that up to 20% of the people of Judah who returned with Ezra from Babylon were refugees from the Northern Kingdom. Nevertheless, as emphasized by Nachmanides, these were considered as nullified amongst Judah and counted as part of Judah just as those of Judah who had gone with Northern Israel are considered part of the Lost Ten Tribes. The Bible has its own terminology and the Bible considers the Northern "Israel" ("Joseph", "Ephraim") to be a separate entity apart from Judah.

(5) Claim 5.
When Ezra and Nehemiah led the captives back from Babylon the returnees were referred to as "the Children of Israel" and they offered sacrifices on behalf of all twelve tribes of Israel. Does this not show that "all Israel" were present?


[Ezra 6:16] AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL, THE PRIESTS, AND THE LEVITES, AND THE REST OF THE CHILDREN OF THE CAPTIVITY, KEPT THE DEDICATION OF THIS HOUSE OF GOD WITH JOY.

[Ezra 6:17] AND OFFERED AT THE DEDICATION OF THIS HOUSE OF GOD AN HUNDRED BULLOCKS, TWO HUNDRED RAMS, FOUR HUNDRED LAMBS; AND FOR A SIN OFFERING FOR ALL ISRAEL, TWELVE HE GOATS, ACCORDING TO THE NUMBER OF THE TRIBES OF ISRAEL.
Twelve male-goats were offered up, one for each tribe. Does this not mean that all tribes were present?

Answer to Claim 5:

These verses mention Kohanim (Priests descended from Aaron from the Tribe of Levi) and Levites and the rest of those who had been taken into captivity, i.e. from Judah and Benjamin. They offered sacrifices for all the Tribes of Israel and so they should have but that does not mean that all the Tribes were present.

There is however a tradition that amongst the present Jewish People there were always representatives of all the Twelve Tribes. The overwhelming majority however were from the Tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi. There was also a minority from the other tribes.

Nachmanides (1194-1270):
"Those from the Tribes of Ephraim and Shimeon from Israel that were present with Judah were they who dwelt in the Land of Judah or perhaps to some degree also those who had dwelt in their own territories adjoining Judah and had fled to Judah. They are referred to in a general sense as from Israel [in 2-Chronicles 35:18] and not by their specific tribes since they represented only a small portion of their tribe. These are they who returned under Ezra with the Jews from Babylon. They were not expressly mentioned by their tribes since they were attached to Judah. They all settled in the cities of Judah. There was no Redemption for the Ten Tribes who remained in exile"
Book of Redemption (Sefer HaGeulah)

In the Books of Ezra and Nehemiah are found lists of the families who returned. to the Land of Israel from Babylon.
ONLY families from the Tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi are mentioned. The Lost Ten Tribes as far as Scripture is concerned were ALL exiled and disappeared.

b. THE COMPLETENESS OF THE ASSYRIAN EXILE IN SECULAR SOURCES

The Exile of Israel


It has been claimed that Assyrian Inscriptions prove that only a relatively small number of people were actually exiled from Northern Israel. The Assyrian inscriptions have been misquoted, as explained below.

[See our extracts from "The Tribes" on the web or buy the book for an up to date complete version].

The Bible says that ALL the northern Israelites were exiled.
[2-Kings 17:18] THEREFORE THE LORD WAS VERY ANGRY WITH ISRAEL, AND REMOVED THEM OUT OF HIS SIGHT: THERE WAS NONE LEFT BUT THE TRIBE OF JUDAH ONLY

The Assyrians also said that ALL the Northern Tribes were taken and in one frequently misquoted example it says that 22,000 (plus) of them were set aside for the personal use of the king (army?) but NOT THAT the total number of exiles was only about 22,000.

Archaeology shows a TOTAL GAP in occupation between the time of Assyrian Exile and the period after. Only the remains of burnt out destroyed cities remain from the Israelite Period AFTER the Assyrian Exile.

The Hebrews' enjoyment of their patrimony was curtailed due to war with Assyria. The lands of Israel were conquered and all of the people exiled. The Tribes east of the Jordan were among the first to be taken away.

[1-Chronicles 5:25] AND THEY TRANSGRESSED AGAINST THE GOD OF THEIR FATHERS, AND WENT A WHORING AFTER THE GODS OF THE PEOPLE OF THE LAND, WHOM GOD DESTROYED BEFORE THEM.

[1-Chronicles 5:26] AND THE GOD OF ISRAEL STIRRED UP THE SPIRIT OF PUL KING OF ASSYRIA, AND THE SPIRIT OF TILGATHPILNESER KING OF ASSYRIA, AND HE CARRIED THEM AWAY, EVEN THE REUBENITES, AND THE GADITES, AND THE HALF TRIBE OF MANASSEH, AND BROUGHT THEM UNTO HALAH, AND HABOR, AND HARA, AND TO THE RIVER GOZAN, UNTO THIS DAY.
"PUL" may well have been another name for Tiglathpileser as well as that of another monarch who preceded him which monarch ALSO had been responsible for an earlier exile of Israelites.

[2-Kings 15:29] IN THE DAYS OF PEKAH KING OF ISRAEL CAME TIGLATHPILESER KING OF ASSYRIA, AND TOOK IJON, AND ABELBETHMAACHAH, AND JANOAH, AND KEDESH, AND HAZOR, AND GILEAD, AND GALILEE, ALL THE LAND OF NAPHTALI, AND CARRIED THEM CAPTIVE TO ASSYRIA.

How many Israelites were exiled may have been debated but the fact is that they all went, the northern Israelite Kingdom along with its inhabitant disappeared from the Israelite area.

The exile of all Israel from the northern Galilee is recorded in an inscription of Tiglathpileser who boasts of exiling all of "Bit Khumria" except for a small remnant which he left around the city of Samaria which city was then the capital and had been built by King Omri1. "Bit Khumria" was the name which the Assyrians gave to northern Israel presumably in remembrance of King Omri 2. The Assyrian ruler Tiglathpileser (745-727) was followed by Shalmaneser (727-722) and he by Sargon (722-705) and then came Senacherib ( 705-681). All of these kings participated in the exile and resettlement of Israelites. After the eastern Tribes and the northern ones had all been exiled, there remained only a rump state centered around the city of Samaria in the south and these too were to be exiled.

2-Kings 17
"THEN THE KING OF ASSYRIA CAME UP THROUGHOUT ALL THE LAND, AND WENT UP TO SAMARIA, AND BESIEGED IT THREE YEARS.

"IN THE NINTH YEAR OF HOSHEA THE KING OF ASSYRIA TOOK SAMARIA, AND CARRIED ISRAEL AWAY INTO ASSYRIA, AND PLACED THEM IN HALAH AND IN HABOR BY THE RIVER OF GOZAN, AND IN THE CITIES OF THE MEDES [2-Kings 17:5-6].

2-Kings 18
"AND AT THE END OF THREE YEARS THEY TOOK IT: EVEN IN THE SIXTH YEAR OF HEZEKIAH, THAT IS IN THE NINTH YEAR OF HOSHEA KING OF ISRAEL, SAMARIA WAS TAKEN.

AND THE KING OF ASSYRIA DID CARRY AWAY ISRAEL UNTO ASSYRIA, AND PUT THEM IN HALAH AND IN HABOR BY THE RIVER OF GOZAN, AND IN THE CITIES OF THE MEDES:

BECAUSE THEY OBEYED NOT THE VOICE OF THE LORD THEIR GOD, BUT TRANSGRESSED HIS COVENANT, AND ALL THAT MOSES THE SERVANT OF THE LORD COMMANDED, AND WOULD NOT HEAR THEM, NOR DO THEM. [2-Kings 18:10-12]

An Assyrian inscription recalls the taking of Samaria and the exile of its inhabitants. This inscription says that the king of Assyria took to himself more than 27,000 people and the rest he removed to Assyria. The inscription may be understood to mean NOT (as is commonly claimed) that Sargon took only 27,000 plus people from Samaria into captivity BUT rather that Sargon took ca. 27,000 people for his own (military) purposes and the remainder of the people he settled in Assyria 3.
"I counted as spoil [2)7,280 people..and the rest of them I resettled in Assyria".
On the basis of this inscription it is sometimes claimed (even in Encyclopedias!!) that not many more than 27,000 were ever actually exiled!!! This claim belies the facts: The inscription applies only to remnants of city of Samaria after a siege of several years whereas other Assyrian inscriptions mention the exile of all Israelite inhabitants from other areas of the country. The inscription itself appears most readily understandable as saying that the 27,000 plus were taken by the king for his own personal or military needs and all of the remainder were packed off maybe even without bothering to count them The inscription is also rendered as:

"I took as booty 27,290 people who lived there. I formed a unit of 50 chariotry from them ..".
Another version says 200 chariotry instead of 50, and adds, "and I settled the rest in Assyria.".


Stephanie DALLEY 4, renders the Nimrud prism account of Sargon thusly:
"The Samarians who had [conspired] against the king [my predecessor] not to endure servitude nor to bring tribute, became angry and did battle. With the army of the great gods my lords I fought against them. I counted as spoil [x+]7,280 people including [their] chariotry and the gods their help. I formed a unit of 200 chariots from them as part of my royal army, and I resettled the rest of them in Assyria. I repopulated Samaria more than before, and put into it people from the countries which I had conquered".
Other renditions of this inscription (such as that of H.Tadmor 5) similarly show that it is possible to read the inscription as saying that Sargon took for his own purposes more than 27,000 captives and the rest of them (i.e. all those that remained apart from the 27,000) he transported to Assyria. Sargon (722-705) mentions above his taking 50 (or 200 in another version) charioteers from Samaria 6. The people of Samaria were besieged and exiled after all the rest of their brethren had already been taken away en masse. Following the exile of Samaria, the Bible says that, "there was none left but the tribe of Judah only" (2-Kings 17:18). The Talmud (Jer.San. ch.10 h.6) and Midrashim (Exodus Rabah 30;5, Leviticus Rabah 5;3) also speak of the Lost Ten Tribes having all been exiled. One late Midrash (Yalkut Shimeoni on Amos) suggests that one in eight remained but the exact meaning of this source is uncertain. Here and there, there do exist hints that a small percentage of the northern tribes remained and became assimilated amongst the Jews of Judah. Archaeologists have discovered a neighborhood in Jerusalem (in the present Jewish Quarter of the Old City) which apparently was settled by refugees from northern Israel 7.

Nevertheless,
SINCE NOTHING REALLY SIGNIFICANT REMAINED OF THEM THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY MUST HAVE GONE INTO EXILE AS THE BIBLE SAYS THEY DID!!
Archaeological excavations also prove the completeness of deportation. For the period after the Assyrian conquest of Israel there is a gap in archaeological finds everywhere with accompanying traces of burning and destruction. For some time afterwards there is no real new settlement and when organized habitation does begin it is small and impoverished, at least at first and nowhere can it be ascribed to the previous Israelite dwellers. In addition to the exile of the Northern Israelites, Sennacherib boasted of having conquered cities in Judah and deported more than 200,000 people. This event is spoken of in Midrashim (Midrash Seder Olam) and other sources of Jewish tradition even though it is merely hinted at in the Bible:

"Now in the fourteenth year of king Hezekiah did Sennacherib king of Assyria come up against all the fenced cities of Judah and took them" (2-Kings 18:13).
The Prophet Isaiah had predicted that after all the Assyrian Exilations of northern Israel and Judah were completed only one in ten of the original population would remain and these apparently would be those in Judah who would later endure an additional exile of their own:
"If there yet remain a tenth in it, it also shall be consumed" (Isaiah 6:13).

The Jews who remained in Judah were destined to be exiled to Babylon and from there to return under the leadership of Ezra and Nehemiah. The Jews of Judah who had been exiled to Babylon did however retain consciousness of their national identity whereas the others ultimately did not. Those Jews who had been taken into exile previously by Sennacherib remained unheard of. "Therefore The LORD was very angry with Israel, and removed them (2 Kings 17:18).....

"Until The LORD removed Israel out of his sight, as he had said by all his servants the prophets. So was Israel carried away out of their own land to Assyria unto this day" (2-Kings 17:3).....

How Many Were Taken?
RAYMOND F. McNAIR, "America And Britain In Prophecy", 1996, USA, p.18:
"Were Millions Just Assimilated?....Professor Salo Baron, acclaimed by the London Daily Express as the worlds greatest authority on Jewish history, says that, prior to Israel's Assyrian captivity, there were not less than four hundred settlements classified as towns (Social and Religious History of the Jews, vol.1, p.72.) Interestingly, Tiglath-pileser boasts that he destroyed at this time five hundred and ninety-one cities[!], whose inhabitants were carried away with all their possessions to Assyria (Tiglath-pileser, Ungers Bible Dictionary, p.1,094). We must remember that those 600 cities were all located in the northern part of the Northern Kingdom and in the region across the Jordan- away from the main concentration of the northern tribes! Thus, Israel, in the eighth century B.C. was an extremely populous nation!"

c. PROOF FROM PROPHECY

The Prophets said that the Lost Ten Tribes were exiled and lost and will return in the End Times.
The historical sections of the Bible (Kings, Chronicles, Ezra) also show that the Ten Tribes were taken away apart possibly from a small fraction who remained or returned and these were not considered of importance in their own right.
These facts are confirmed by Rabbinical Sources and by historical findings. Attempts to deny this truth have to deny the evidence which is something we do not do. The Lost Ten Tribes are to be found today amongst western peoples.
This is what the Bible says.
We have complete articles showing how from Biblical and Rabbinical Sources the Lost Ten Tribes were destined, until close to the Last Days, to remain :

Separate from Judah.
Not known on the whole to Judah.


This also is proof that the Exile of the Northern Ten Tribes was a complete one.
The Bible is true and must be believed.
The Bible says that the Ten Tribes were destined to remain:
Separate from Judah (Isaiah 11:12-13 49:21);
Not known to Judah (Isaiah 49:13-14, 21. Hosea 1:7)
to practice Christianity (Hosea 2:8, 2:13, 2:16 11:12 Jeremiah 31:6)
to intermix with Gomer implying a Linkage with European nations (Hosea chapter one)
In the future they will re-unite with the Jews of "Judah" (Ezekiel 37, Isaiah 11:13 Jeremiah 3:18) but until then they have a role of their own to fulfill. They were destined to be situated at the continental extremities of the earth such as North America, the British Isles, Scandinavia, the Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa (Deuteronomy 33:13 Isaiah 24:16 26:15 41:8-9 49:6),
to be the richest (Genesis 27:28 49:25 Deuteronomy 33:13-16 Hosea 2:8),
and most powerful nations on earth (Numbers 24:8-7 Micah 5:7-9)
and to control major international strategic bases (Genesis 22:16-17 24:60).
To fulfil more than a hundred other criteria a partial
list
of which is given on this site.
You need to know.
Your destiny may depend upon this information.
The three Rs of Brit-Am:
a. Research: Proving where descendants of the Lost Ten Tribes are today.
b. Revelation: Revealing Research findings to others especially to those who are identifiable as "Lost Israelites" and to the Jews of "Judah".
c. Reconciliation: Working for the Recognition that the Lost Tribes and Judah have a mutual destiny and common origin and interest and therefore need to accept Israelite identification and the unique role of each other.

References
1. IKEDA, Yutaka. "The Kingdom of Hamath and its Relations with Aram and Israel", Ph.D. Thesis, Jerusalem, 1977, pp.270
Return to Main Text
2. CAH 3 Cambridge Ancient History volume 3, "The Assyrian Empire",
edited by Bury, Cook, and Adcock. Cambridge 1954, p.7
Return to Main Text
3. DALLEY, Stephanie. “Foreign Chariotry and Cavalry in the armies of Tiglathpileser-iii and Sargon-ii”, Iraq, vol.xlvii, 1985, London, p.35
Return to Main Text
4. DALLEY, p.36
Return to Main Text
5. TADMOR, Haim. “The History of Samaria From its Foundation until the Macedonian Conquest”,
in “Eretz Shomron”, Jerusalem, 5734, 1975.
Return to Main Text
6. D.D. LUCKENBILL, "Ancient Records of Assyria and Babylon," U.S.A. 1968, p.26
Return to Main Text
7. B. Mazar quoted by Jerusalem Post 29.8.86 Dr. M. Broshi in BAR, 1975, vol.i, no.3, p.22ff. Return to Main Text

See also:
The Stages of Exile


Join the Brit-Am E-Mail
Discussion Group

Home


Publications